October 22, 2015 at 8:58 am

Kaufman Publishes ‘Prisoner Incorporation: The Work of the State and Non-Governmental Organizations’

Dr. Nicole Kaufman, Assistant Professor of Sociology at Ohio University, authored an article on “Prisoner incorporation: The work of the state and non-governmental organizations” in Theoretical Criminology.

Dr. Nicole Kaufman

Dr. Nicole Kaufman

Abstract: This article brings the concept of incorporation as used in studies of citizenship into the analysis of the reception of ex-prisoners by non-governmental organizations (NGOs). I introduce the concept of “prisoner incorporation” to illustrate the ways in which NGOs, tasked with reentry work through devolution policies, include ex-prisoners as citizens. I use data from policy and organizational documents, interviews with staff at 18 NGOs, and program observations to demonstrate that incorporation varies by religious and political orientation and the receipt of Department of Corrections (DOC) funding. I distinguish between NGOs focused on “classic reentry,” which emphasizes treatment and work-focused economic incorporation, and those focused on “broader incorporation,” in which domestic labor, culture, religion, and politics warrant the inclusion of ex-prisoners as citizens in particular communities. Based on the results, I reconsider arguments that NGOs have a limited ability to shape the citizenship of criminalized people.

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